Queen Elizabeth II to become Britain's longest reigning monarch, surpassing Queen Victoria

Queen Elizabeth's reign will surpass Queen Victoria's

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The Independent Online

Queen Elizabeth II is set to make history by becoming Britain’s longest reigning monarch.

On 9 September she will claim the title, as a reign which began 63 years and seven months ago when she was just 25-years-old continues.

Queen Elizabeth II acceded to the throne following the death of her father King George VI on 6 February, 1952.

During that time, she has watched as modern advances have transformed the world.

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Picture dated from the year 1933 of the future Queen Elizabeth II (right ) and her sister Princess Margaret (Image: Getty)

 
Who held the record before her?

Previously, Queen Elizabeth’s great grandmother Queen Victoria held the record, having reigned for 23,226 days, 16 hours and 23 minutes.

In May 2011, Queen Elizabeth II became the second-longest reigning monarch in British history, when she overtook George III, who was King for around 59 years.

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Queen Victoria and alongside Prince Albert, the Prince Consort, at Buckingham Palace (Image: Getty)

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How will she celebrate?

To mark the occasion, the Queen will come away from her traditional summer break at her private home in Balmoral, Scotland, to open the new Scottish Borders Railway and take a steam train ride on the new £294 million railway.

What is the significance?

Historian Dr Kate Williams said: "It's a very significant milestone. The Queen will become the longest reigning British monarch in history. She came to the throne when she was older than Victoria. Victoria was only 18.

"It shows that our female monarchs last the longest. The Queen's longevity is a great source of her strength and popularity. She has lived through World War Two and throughout the 20th century. Many people will not have known a different monarch."

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Queen Elizabeth II poses with the royal sceptre 2 June 1953 after being crowned at Westminter Abbey in London (Image: Getty)

Any other milestones?

In December 2007, she overtook Queen Victoria, who died aged 81, as the longest living monarch.

On top of this, thanks to the Commonwealth, the Queen also holds the world record for most currencies featuring the same individual, According to Guinness World Records.

The Queen is also the first British monarch to have sent an email, to have a message put on the moon, have conducted a royal ”walkabout“ and to have held a public concert in her back garden.

Queen Elizabeth comes second to King Bhumibol Adulyadej of Thailand as the world's longest reigning monarch. Having risen to the throne in 1946, the reclusive monarch is rarely seen in public.

Additional reporting by PA

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